ASTRI and CUHK Pull Together to Launch Smart City Technology Oriented Practitioner Programme

The Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute (ASTRI) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with The Faculty of Engineering of The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) today (2 March) on implementing a Smart City Technology Oriented Practitioner (TOP) programme for up to 30 master students in the Faculty of Engineering of CUHK. ASTRI will provide paid full-time employment opportunities to enrolled students for a period of four to eight months and engage them in one of the ASTRI’s ongoing smart city-related projects, with a view to developing future leaders for smart city transformation.

Witnessed by Ms. Rebecca Pun Ting-ting, JP, Commissioner for Innovation and Technology of the HKSAR Government, Dr. Lucas Hui Chi-kwong, Acting Co-CEO cum Chief Technology Officer of ASTRI and Professor Martin D.F. Wong, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering of CUHK signed the MoU on behalf of the two parties.

The TOP programme supports the recently released initiative by the HKSAR Government, Smart City Blueprint for Hong Kong 2.0 which strives to build Hong Kong into a world-class smart city.

Dr. Lucas Hui Chi-kwong said, “Developing scientific talent in Hong Kong is one of ASTRI’s goals. We are pleased to cooperate with CUHK to equip the new generation with scientific research talents to excel in all areas of smart cities.”

Dr. Martin Szeto Sin-ho, Acting Co-CEO cum Chief Operating Officer of ASTRI, said, “This practitioner programme for technology professionals is supporting the initiatives to develop ‘smart people’ as indicated in the Smart City Blueprint for Hong Kong, with the purpose of cultivating more human capital to promote technological development.”

Professor Martin D.F. Wong remarked, “This is a strategic partnership which connects our CUHK Engineering Faculty and students with ASTRI, a leading applied research institute in Hong Kong, through a work-study programme which enables our participation in state-of-the-art research and development that drives Hong Kong’s smart city initiative. I am confident and excited that the CUHK-ASTRI partnership will be pivotal in realising the vision for a smart city as laid out in the blueprint.”

The programme welcomes applications from students enrolled in master’s degree programmes under the Faculty of Engineering of CUHK in the academic year of 2021/22. After interview, a maximum of 30 students will serve as paid full-time research assistants in ASTRI, starting from the first quarter of 2022. They will be involved in smart city related projects and solving “pain points” for various organisations through research and development of applied technology, facilitating operations in a more intelligent and efficient way and benefiting people and business in our society.

ASTRI has formulated technological solutions for various government departments, public institutions and enterprises over the years with the adoption of international and industry standards throughout the process, while fully considering public policies, legal requirements, and stakeholders’ needs and concerns. The abilities and achievements of the professionals are affirmed by ASTRI partners and employers in the Research and Development sector. Students participating in the TOP programme will gain valuable work experience and lay a solid foundation for future employment in innovation and technology as well as the smart city industry.

The CUHK Engineering Faculty has now evolved into an integrated engineering school. Its strength lies in its world-class position with high quality research facilities and a strong commitment to the latest application of modern technology. The Faculty prides itself as one of the pioneers in the research on artificial intelligence (AI) and deep learning. It has received top awards in international challenges for face recognition and visual recognition. The CUHK Multimedia Laboratory, named as one of the pioneers in AI research, is the only institution in Asia receiving this recognition. Different research and teaching teams at the Faculty of Engineering are dedicated to the applications of AI and deep learning in various areas and the education of talented engineers for smart city development.